SEC’Y: CAPT Dave Carruth, USN (Ret.)
                                                  7206 Danford Lane; Springfield, VA 22152
                                                   P: 703-569-1354        E: slipstk@aol.com
                                       WEBMASTER: John Tsiknas
                                                    15644 Caldas De Reyes, San Diego, CA 92128
                                                    E: johntsiknas@att.net 
                                        WEB SITE: 1948.usnaclasses.com

CLASS OF 1948 SHIPMATE COLUMN
SEPTEMBER-OCTOBER - 2016

There will be 36 birthdays for Classmates in Sept –Oct with the oldest, and oldest in the Class, Joe Kovacs 24th Co. who was born on 9/2/22.  The rest, including me, range from 90 to 93.  At these ages we all have some health problems but most of the men and the wives report that they are still getting around pretty well.  I can’t tie a number to this but many of us are still trying to age in place.  An email from Gene Portner 13th Co. says he and Kay are still in their own home because they have a young happily married, college educated woman with two children who does the cooking, cleaning, shopping and nursing for them.  She is not a member of the Portner family.  She walks with Gene to the neighborhood coffee shop every day, and the caffeine, exercise, and good company seems to be working for him.

Scribe’s note: Now that is the arrangement all of us would like to have.  Kay and Gene you have been blessed.

A snail mail letter from W.S.M. (Bill) Arnold  9th Co. includes his current address: 631 Wedge Ln., Fernley, NV  89408.  He is now close to his son.  Bill says he left his computer with his daughter Anne in Alexandria.  She is selling his house and will be moving west this year.   I have to report that Bill’s cursive is even worse than mine so I’ll be glad when he gets his computer.  He celebrated his 90th on July 4th. and says with the help of a walker, hearing aids and a sense of humor he is getting along OK.  Last Aug. he was offered a ride in a Stearman Biplane (Yellow Peril?) and got a few minutes of stick time.  He says it all comes back quickly.

When I published Vilma Loheed Mitchell Hurt’s obituary it prompted Ty Dedman 13th Co. to write.  His letter, to me, spells out the nucleus of the close friendships we form in the service so I’m offering it to you.

Thanks, Dave.  Vilma was a close friend of both of us, and a class act.
Hugh was one of my “groomsmen”, and daughter Lorene was a flower girl at our wedding.  Hugh and I served at sea together in the same squadron or air group on three occasions, and on ships that steamed in company in both the Med and WestPac on three more.  Ashore, whether in homeport, at NWC or at the Pentagon, our family homes were always within easy strolling distance.

Memories abound.  Little Peter wildly waving an American flag and yelling at the top of his lungs “Welcome, Mr. President” as Ike’s limo passed through the Navy housing area enroute to the summer White House in Brenton Village, Newport.  Remarking to Hugh at the end of a long cross-country flight from Washington, DC to Los Angeles and return, in a small single engine jet trainer, that “I had never flown with anyone who was so thoroughly professional in every aspect of flying-whether flight planning and navigation, weather briefing, or airmanship than I had when flying with him”.  Responding to a teary-eyed neighbor (civilian) at a neighborhood good-bye party for the Loheeds as they departed DC for San Diego, “How can you guys (Ty and Bettye) remain so emotionally at peace when Hugh and Vilma’s departure is literally tearing the rest of us apart?”  (Answer and example: Unexpectedly, the cars of the Dedmans and Loheeds pulled into adjacent parking places at the San Diego PX less than six weeks later). Both families were shopping for the usual stuff you need when moving into a new home, and were overjoyed that “once more, we would be living nearby”.

Being both startled and elated to have Hugh sit down beside me at Sunday services on Connie’s fo’casle in late fall 1964 at Yankee Station, rather than enjoying well-earned time with family following his return to San Diego of his ship and air group after their 8 month Westpac deployment.  Knowing that it meant an immediate return to Westpac and to a war that had now become very “hot”, Hugh had accepted assignment to an A4 squadron XO billet with the Connie air group.

Receiving a call from a Pentagon friend that Hugh’s plane had been shot down, and even worse, that Hugh’s status had been declare as MIA.

Talking with Dave Hurt  18th Co., shortly before he left Florida for Coronado, with Dave sharing his thoughts and hopes for a quiet future with Vilma, during their final years.  I sensed that Dave was seeking understanding and affirmation from a few friends and classmates, and I assured him that he certainly had mine and Bettye’s.

Scribe’s note:  Now that you have experienced Ty’s style and quality, if you haven’t read all of his essays on our home page I encourage you to treat yourself by going to 1948.usnaclasses.com and clicking on individual news.  All of Ty’s essays are excellent, enjoyable reading.

Sometimes I lose contact with people and such was the case recently with Dave Cammack  17th Co.when all emails to him begin bouncing.  I tried to call but was told the number has been terminated (I must have dialed it wrong.)  I asked Timothy Woodbury if she had anything and she came back with “no, but his wife passed away in 2014 and here is her obit.”  When I published the obit I received an email from Cab Davis 17th Co. saying he and Dave were roommates the last two years at USNA.  I asked Cab if he had contact and he responded-Dave, I just talked to David for a long time! He and I are life long friends since 8th grade in junior high in Charleston, WV.  He is 91 (June 14th) and I am 90 (July 20th).  We had not been in touch since last year, no reason just neglect.  He is still living in the same apartment with the same phone number.  He sounds like he’s doing very well, does knee bends daily, walks 1/3-1/2 miles daily & line dances once a week.  While we had him on the phone we got his sister Anne Cammack Brewster’s phone and address.  Since Ben Brewster 19th Co. is also a Classmate and isn’t listed in the roster I thought you would like his info too.  Ben and Anne Brewster, 40 Autumn Dr., Apt 211, Slingerlands, NY  12159.  Phone 518-269-4380.

Scribe’s note:  I particularly like the part about line dancing.  Good on ya’ Dave and keep it up.

Once more only a month between columns but this time we haven’t been so lucky.  We’ve learned of the passing of four Classmates and two wives.
         Classmates:
         8th Co.   Latimer, Henry B. “Herk”    7/5/16
         9th Co.   Wilson, K.E.                        7/7/16 *#
         7th Co.   Jortberg, R.F.                       7/8/16 *#
         11th Co. Jones, W.F.                          7/19/16 *#
                           Bios-* 50 year book, # 30 year book
         Wives:
                  Shirley, Cammack 11/19/14  wife of Dave Cammack 17th Co.

                   Vilma Loheed Mitchell, Hurt  5/11/16  Wife of Dave Hurt (deceased) 18th Co.

Scribe’s note:  I have read through the obituaries of Shirley and Vilma in an attempt to excerpt them for the column but conclude that they cannot be condensed (at least not by me) and still tell their story properly.  I believe all military wives have amazing life stories but Shirley and Vilma are a bit above and beyond.  You would have to know them or at least read their entire obits.

John Fry (deceased) 21st Co. has been our presenter of the Class of ’48 award, $1000.00, to the best graduate in Information Technology.  After John crossed the bar Roger Carlquist 19th Co. agreed to take on that responsibility and made the presentation to Mid’n King ’16 at this year’s awards ceremony.

A snail mail from Tom O’Connor 19th Co. shows that his family is working hard to keep USNA afloat:

Alice and I were at USNA for I-Day on June 30th to witness the induction of grandson Nicholas Elder from Roanoke, VA with his parents, our daughter Diane and son-in-law Alan.  Consider the fact that “Nic” represents a third generation O’Connor to enter USNA:  Tom ’48 (Supply), son Tom Jr. ’75 (Submarines), son Larry ’83 (NFO/EA6B), grandson Peyton Walsh ’15 (Marines), grandson Bradley Elder ‘15 (Navy Seals), and now grandson Nicholas, Class of 2020.  Nic starts his Navy career as a recruited baseball player with some outstanding academic and baseball pitcher credentials.  Needless to say, Alice and I are very proud and happy grandparents!

Scribe’s note:  Tom sent along two very good pictures and as soon as I figure out how to scan them into my computer from my new printer/scanner I will put them in a column.

The O’Connors are not the only multi generation USNA families.  Charlie Heid 17th Co. and Carol Manganaro have multiple generations represented also and I feel certain there are other Classmates who have children and grandchildren following in their footsteps.

On June 8th Classmates attended a luncheon set up by Roger Carlquist.  Judy and Bob Flood 18th Co. have provided a few comments on the gathering:

Class members gathered in Galesville, MD to enjoy fine dining on the West River at Pirate’s Cove.  The group mixed, mingled, and enjoyed a selection of beer, wines and soft drinks.  Roger Carlquist called the luncheon to order and welcomed two special quests:  CDR Mike Bilzor from the Naval Academy and our own IT scholarship winner from the Class of 2016 – 2nd Lt. Jason King, USMC.  Bob Flood offered a mariner’s prayer, then the group enjoyed a delicious meal of crab cakes, shrimp and grits, and meatloaf.

After the meal, CDR Bilzor outlined the current IT program at USNA and discussed its direct impact on midshipmen.  He thanked the Class of 1948 for their  generous endowment, which supports visiting professors, acquisition of needed hardware and server support, and other program essentials.

Our next speaker was 2nd Lt. King who shared his experiences as a middle school student when he unsuccessfully completed his first IT course, and repeated it at the insistence of his very wise mother.  When he retook the course, something special clicked, and he found his lifelong niche in IT.  We enthusiastically applauded and congratulated Lt. King when he announced that the Navy is sending him to pursue a master’s degree at Stanford University this fall.

The group enjoyed brownies and birthday cupcakes to end the meal.  Attendees included:  Jim Beggs, 10th Co Amante and Roger Carlquist, Lt Col Jason Finch and daughters Anjali and Sarah, Judy and Bob Flood, Joanne and Kevin Hanlon 2nd Co., Grace Harkins, Jean and Charlie Mertz  13th Co., Christina Mertz, Carolyn  Quatraro, and Margaret and Phil  Shutler 2nd Co.

Scribe’s Note:  Sounds like a good time was had by all.  Pirate’s Cove always gives us a good meal.  Betty and I wish we could have been there to see everyone but also to enjoy those crab cakes.

Nancy and Warren Graham  2nd Co. are off to the beach on their annual vacation though Warren says his eyesight is deteriorating (he is a victim of age related macular degeneration both wet and dry which a goodly number of us, myself included, now say they are experiencing.)  Nancy is facing a back operation in the not too distant future.  I’ll keep you apprised so we can keep her in our prayers.

My input to the Nov.-Dec. Shipmate is not due until Sept. 26 so I get a short respite and you have some extra time to send me a few words on how you are doing.  I hope you have taken advantage of this opportunity.  If not you still have time.  Our numbers are shrinking so let’s make an extra effort to stay in touch.

Finally it is worth noting that we are now 2 years away from our 70th reunion.  As the Class of ’46 has said of their 70th, the attendance was small but the work to organize was not much decreased so if we plan to gather we need to decide where and how we will celebrate.  Give this some thought.